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Do you own rental property?

If you are a landlord and own rental property, it is important for you to understand how the property is titled – whether it is in the name of a limited liability corporation or in your own name.  It is also important after determining the previous question, as to what liability exists if something were to happen at the rental property and how it would need to be handled and how it can impact yourself and your life.  We have seen homeowners purchase property and use it as their primary residences, but after a point, it then becomes a rental property.  However, the title to the property still remains in the homeowner’s own name and not the name of a limited liability corporation.  This can open the door for liability if a tenant were to bring an action against you.  Please seek assistance if you plan on purchasing a rental property or utilizing a primary residence as a rental property to ensure that you understand the liability and to ensure you have the property titled in the correct manner. 

Are You Organized?

As our lives get more complicated, we seem to acquire more paperwork and now of days only electronic paperwork.  We know where we save our files, where we keep the key to our safety deposit box and safe, what our account numbers and usernames are, and much more.  Does anyone else?  Probably not.  We are told to keep these items secret and locked away.  However, we need to plan for if something were to happen to us while we are traveling, a sudden medical emergency or anything else that may arise.  This planning is essential.  Therefore, take the steps to organize your important documents in one location whether they are the copies or originals.  Then let your closest family member or friend now where to find them before you travel overseas or just so they know in case of an emergency.  The important documents can include your driver’s license, passport, birth certificate, financial power of attorney, advanced health care directive, last will and testament, trusts, life/mortgage/disability/homeowners’ insurance policies, stock certificates, investment statements, bank statements, listing of personal effects with serial numbers, and any other personal matters.  Becoming organized will assist in finding your important documents when time truly counts.   

Take the First Step!

Within our daily lives, we are always busy and filling our time with different items that we need to cross off on our to do list.  However, estate planning never seems to be on that list as there are many other urgent matters to attend too.  Why is this?  Estate planning is something most people do not want to think about.  Estate planning is not in the here and now, instead it’s about planning for the future – both what you can and cannot predict.  The estate planning process encourages and challenges individuals and couples to answer questions they are not typically thinking about on a daily basis.  When sitting down with an attorney, they will be able to help you through this process and answer these questions.  They will not be able to answer the questions for you as it is your life and you have to make the decisions.  The attorney will be able to provide you will tools and guidance to make this process as simple and seamless as it can be.  If you start this process now, you are taking a large step in securing your future.